Selling Your Home: 5 Home Improvement Projects to Avoid

by Editor on October 17, 2013

Home office reorganization in progress

When selling a home, most realtors suggest that their clients spruce up the property to entice buyers and add appeal to the home. While some projects are necessary and can make a positive impact, other home improvement projects can actually do more harm than good. When selling your home, here are 5 home improvement projects you should avoid but the best results.

1. Adding very personal style elements such as bright colors, unique fixtures, and family photos. While these choices may be great for you and your taste, they may not appeal to potential homebuyers and could be the difference between a family purchasing the home or walking. Keep style choices classic and neutral so that any family could envision their furniture and possessions in the space.

2. Turning a bedroom into a home office or a closet. This may seem like a great way to utilize space while you are living in your home, however when it comes time to sell, this can seriously impact your ability to sell the home and can decrease its attractiveness to potential buyers. If you do change a bedroom and use it for another purpose, make sure it can easily be changed back into a bedroom when needed.

3. Adding a swimming pool. In some areas that are warm all year round, this may be a “must have” for homeowners. However if you live in an area that is seasonal, a pool may not be very practical for most potential buyers. Pools come with lots of maintenance and additional safety liabilities that some homeowners do not want to have to deal with. Adding a pool right before selling a home could make or break a deal.

4. Transforming a garage into a family room or den. Using this space as a living space may be nice for your family so that you have more space to entertain and relax, however it is considered a big “no” in the real estate world. This set up may work for you if you are not worried about storing your car in a garage, however most homeowners, especially in the suburbs, will expect to have a garage feature in their home. Lacking a true garage will likely deter a large chunk of your potential buyers.

5. Too much landscaping or gardening. While every home should have some curb appeal, you want to keep it simple. Extravagant gardens require lots of maintenance, and while you may have a green thumb, your potential buyers may not and so they could be scared off by the idea of having to garden themselves or needing to hire a gardener or landscaper. Keep your yard neat, clean and attractive, without going over the top.

While some improvements can drastically help you to sell your home, these 5 can actually harm your chances of selling. Be sure to make changes and choices that are neutral, convenient, and real estate friendly so that you don’t scare away potential buyers with taste-specific design elements, converted spaces, safety liabilities, or excessive yard maintenance. Keeping these pro home improvement tips in mind will allow you to present a home that any potential buyer would be excited to purchase and make their own.

photo by: Dossy

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